The SmarK Rant for WWF Prime Time Wrestling – 03.23.87

(Hey all, Scott here.  I was at Star Wars last night until late and didn’t have time to prepare a new review, but here’s the next one in the Prime Time Wrestling 1987 lineup, which I actually did when it aired on WWE 24/7.  Unfortunately I was more paying attention to the matches rather than the studio banter at the point when I was writing these ones…)  

The SmarK 24/7 Rant for Primetime Wrestling – March 23 1987

Hosted by Gorilla & Bobby

Dino Bravo v. Hillbilly Jim.

We’re clearly in Toronto because of the big ramp and the camera angle, and Dino’s brown hair puts this much earlier in 1987, if not late 1986.  Jim controls with a headlock and a slam to start.  Bravo stalls and charges, but runs into a boot and Jim follows with an atomic drop that sends Bravo out for, you guessed it, more stalling.  Back in, Dino powers him into an inverted atomic drop and stomps away, which gets two.  Gorilla makes a comment about Hogan training for his upcoming title defense against Andre, so that would place this in February of 87.  Bravo gets a sideslam and drops an elbow for two, but Jim comes back with a clothesline.  Jim pounds away in the corner and the ref gets bumped , which allows Johnny V to comes in for some extra abuse.  Dino and Johnny celebrate, but in a SHOCKING, Vince Russo-like swerve, he awards the match to Jim by DQ at 5:31.  Whew, what an emotional roller coaster that one was.  1/2*

Sivi Afi v. Ivan McDonald.

What a weird battle of jobbers this is.  Afi gets a slam and dropkick that puts Ivan on the floor in the most awkward way possible, with the poor guy having to throw himself over the top in melodramatic fashion and failing horribly at it.  Back in, Ivan works the arm, but Afi takes him down with some weak chops.  Afi works the leg with a stepover toehold into an indian deathlock, and a rollup gets two.  Ivan comes back with a slam and drops an elbow for two, but Afi kicks him down for two.  Gutwrench into a jumping headbutt finishes at 5:52.  Wow, what a finishing sequence that was.  1/4*

It’s the WRESTLEMANIA REPORT!  With Mean Gene!  He runs down the card and we get clips of the battle royale from SNME.

The Can-Am Connection v. Demolition.

The Demos still have Johnny V managing them instead of the more fitting Mr Fuji.  This should have been the feud that carried tag team wrestling in 1988, but it wasn’t meant to be.  Smash overpowers Zenk to start and chokes him out on the ropes, but Martel comes in for a pair of double-dropkicks that clears the ring.  They trade off on Smash’s arm in the corner, so he allows Ax to come in and try.  Martel takes him to the mat with a hammerlock and the Can-Ams double up on his arm in the corner.  We take a break and return with Ax clotheslining Martel on the top rope to halt the momentum, and Rick is YOUR Frenchman-in-peril.  Martel fights back and slugs Ax down for two, but the kickout puts him on the floor again, and Smash drags him back in. Martel gets a sunset flip, but Ax breaks it up and pounds away.  Martel fires back with a really nice forearm shot that almost knocks the wind out of Ax, but the Demos cut off the ring and prevent a tag. Some nice work in the corner with the ref distracted, but Ax misses an elbowdrop and it’s hot tag Zenk. Noggins are knocked and the Demos collide, and the match is just so darn crazy that the Can-Ams get counted out at 10:18.  Really, having either team do a job at this point in their tenure would have been counterproductive.  **1/2

SD Jones v. The Red Demon.

Thankfully, this is joined in progress.  We pick things up with the Demon, who as advertised is dressed in red, pounding on SD on the mat, and he uses the the tape to choke him out.  That goes on for what can only be termed a ridiculously long time.  Jones comes back with a headbutt, but misses a charge and hits the post, and this continues.  The Demon is all “choke choke choke”, but Jones comes back with a slam (wow, that’s his big offensive onslaught?  No wonder he lost in “9 seconds” to King Kong Bundy), but makes the fatal error of trying to unmask the Demon and gets kicked in the junk.  Well, there’s his mistake — you don’t just unmask an agent of Hell, you have to call an exorcist first.  The Demon starts working on the leg and uses a submission hold that appears to be a light stretching exercise.  Maybe he should have changed his gimmick to The Physical Therapist, because everyone hates them.  Jones slugs back, but the Demon keeps hammering on the knee to bring him down again, but Jones finishes with a sunset flip at 8:10.  Yes, EIGHT MINUTES for this.  Well, I was cheering for the Demon, but you generally knows that the guy with the action figure is gonna win.  DUD

Kamala & Sika v. The Killer Bees.

The Bees go after Sika’s arm to start, so he brings Kamala in and Blair has to evade him.  That works for a bit, but he stupidly tries a slam and gets pounded down by Kamala.  Big splash misses and Brunzell comes in for a double slam, and the Bees take over in the corner.  That doesn’t last long, as Blair gets choked out by Kamala and we take a break.  Back with Sika slugging away on Blair in the corner.  Kamala comes in for a thrust kick and the two-handed choke.  Sika adds some punches and they do a weak false tag spot, but heel miscommunication sets up the hot tag to Brunzell.  Dropkick finishes Sika right away at 8:23.  Well that was abrupt.  Dull match. 3/4*

 Jose Luis Rivera v. Johnny K-9.

Good god, it’s all tag matches and jobber battles this week.  Are they just dumping all the crap matches they taped to torture audiences in a bizarre form of medical experimentation?  I have no clue who’s going over here, which at least adds some intrigue.  K-9 attacks and tosses Rivera to start.  Back in, Rivera comes back with a slam and some armdrags into a dropkick, which puts K-9 on the floor to recover.  Rivera starts working the arm, but K-9 comes back with a kneelift and puts him on the floor with a clothesline.  Rivera comes back with a forearm shiver and blocks a charge with a knee, which sets up a missile dropkick.  And being that this is the biggest offensive move seen this week, that’s enough to finish at 5:50.  1/2*  K-9 went on to some small amount of fame as Bruiser Bedlam in OVW.

King Kong Bundy & Paul Orndorff v. Don Muraco & Bob Orton.

Well, this is an odd choice for a main event for the show.  Especially since both sides are well established as heels.  Orndorff and Muraco exchange clean breaks to start, but Orndorff is the first with a cheapshot, which brings Orton in.  They slug it out and Orndorff slams him, and brings in Bundy to bat cleanup.  Bundy and Orndorff are obviously being accepted as faces by the fans, probably by virtue of being the bigger stars.  Bundy quickly tries the Avalanche, but Orton smartly runs away and lets Muraco come back in.  Orton chokes Orndorff out behind the ref’s back, and Orton gets a backbreaker for two, which sets up more choking from Muraco.  Bearhug, but Orndorff breaks loose and makes the tag to Bundy.  He quickly hits the Avalanche, but Orton gives him a sucker punch before he can get the pin and tags himself in.  He slugs away, but Bundy brings Orndorff back in, and an atomic drop gets two.  It’s BONZO GONZO  and Muraco hits Orton with the cane by accident, and Orndorff gets the pin at 6:21.  Weird match.  *1/2


Oh, sorry, drifted off there.  See ya next time.